Family Sues Medical Center Chain, Alleging Negligent Death

Case relies on security camera video

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A family is suing Leon Medical Centers in a case that centers on video from a transport bus's security camera videos.

The incident happened in 2018. An elderly woman, Maria Duran, had suffered a head injury at her home. The next day, she boarded a Leon Medical Center transport bus which was taking her to a previously scheduled checkup at the Leon facility in Kendall. On the way, her condition deteriorated rapidly. 

A Miami-Dade Police report of the incident says Duran asked the driver to take her to a hospital. The driver did not do that, and Duran ended up dying. Her family’s lawsuit alleges if the driver had taken action, she would have survived. 

“What wasn’t done here is Leon Medical Center failed to render emergency aid to somebody who needed it,” said Aaron Davis, an attorney representing the family. 

“It’s been devastating, incredibly devastating, painful for all of us,” said Jose Duran, Maria Duran’s son. 

The video inside the bus shows the 86-year-old Duran vomit twice, and then apparently lose consciousness as she falls over onto another passenger. She is seated in the front row, near the driver.

According to the police report, Duran was on the bus for more than an hour and it wasn’t until the bus arrived at the medical center that someone called 911 for help. The video shows Miami-Dade Fire Rescue paramedics taking Duran off the bus. She appears unresponsive. 

“The fact that they didn’t do anything for that entire bus ride is shocking,” Davis said. 

Jose Duran says it took him two years to drum up the courage to view the video of his mom. 

“We haven’t gotten over it, it’s still, the heart it still hurts, and the fact that no one has shown any responsibility or accountability for what happened, it hurts even more,” Duran said. 

Leon Medical Centers sent us a statement saying, “Leon Medical Centers sympathizes with the family of Maria Duran, who died of blunt head trauma from a fall at her home in 2018. Leon strongly denies any negligence in this case. To be clear, Leon denies that the injury to Ms. Duran occurred on the Leon bus and no allegation has been made to that effect in this case. Beyond that, we cannot comment on the facts of the case while the case is awaiting jury trial.”

Davis says no one is alleging that Maria Duran was injured on the bus, only that the driver ignored her condition and did nothing to help. 

The bus, by the way, passed a hospital on the way and did not stop. 

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